Friday, March 21


Just a few weeks after my commitment to healthier eating, I am happy to report that I actually am seeing improvements in the twins' behavior! Hallelujah! I have cooked real food every single night, and nearly all of it has been organic. We have also purchased a pig as well as a side of beef, so in a few weeks we will have a freezer full of fresh, hormone/antibiotic free, local meat. We have purchased a pig about every 6 months since we moved to Como, but this is our first round with the cow. It is grass fed and grass finished (which I didn't even know was a thing) and I am really excited!

In other exciting news, we have visitors coming tonight! Granny and Papa are driving up from FL as we speak. I can't wait to see them! If the weather is nice next week, we are planning to have a few outings, including a day trip to St Louis. It should be a lot of fun!

Wednesday, March 12

I have become the mom I always judged...

When I was younger, before I ever had kids, I worked in a preschool. I silently judged many of the moms. Specifically the stay at home moms that dropped their little one off and bounced out the door for their day at the gym, the spa, the mall, or whatever else they might be doing. It never made any sense to me, that a stay at home mom would pay someone to watch her kids. What did she do while they were gone? And to find out that the same mom also had a housekeeper--my brain nearly exploded. I mean, how lazy can someone get?!

Fast forward 10 or so years and I am starting to get it. Every Tuesday and Thursday morning, I drop my twins off for 4 hours of preschool. 4 hours of blissful, (mostly) quiet time. 4 hours that I can utilize to go to the grocery store with only one kid in tow, catch up on laundry, go to the doctor, or perhaps take a quick nap. I need these 4 hours to maintain my sanity. I love all of my girls, but I do need a little break from time to time. And besides that, they desperately needed the socialization!

Not only have I shipped my kids off to preschool, I have also paid someone to clean and organize my house. When I still had approximately 40 unopened boxes in the garage a year after we moved, I knew I needed to call in a pro. I am SO glad I did. And the cleaning, oh god, the cleaning... It never ends! I can clean the house floor to ceiling, but 5 minutes later, it is a wreck again. It never ends. I'm happy to let someone else tackle it every once in a while. Go ahead, call me lazy.

Other things I would "never" do:

Bribe my kids. Ha! That's an almost daily occurrence here...

Let my baby have a pacifier past 1 year. Avery was well over 2 when we finally got hers pried out of her mouth, and the twins were around 18 months. No clue when we will take Maren's but it won't be anytime soon...

Let my appearance slack. Doesn't everyone want to be the mom that looks put together every second of every day? Sure, but who actually has time for that shit?

Lose myself in my kids' lives. Sadly, this has happened. I feel like I no longer have an identity outside "That mom with peanut butter on her shirt and spit up in her hair." Most of my day is spent running kids to their various activities, and I haven't made any time to explore my own interests. I am trying to change this, though.

Have a child that has to be practically dragged out of a store/restaurant/other public place. Yeah, this one is completely unavoidable with twin toddlers. My own personal hell was served up to me last summer when I dropped Avery off at art camp and Elizabeth realllllly wanted to stay. It took me 45 minutes to get her out of the building. I mean, what can you really do when you have another toddler and you are also carrying a newborn? It was terrible. I was hoping a kind stranger would take pity on me and hold the baby while I wrangled the angry twin, but no such luck. And I won't even tell you how long it took to get her through the parking lot and into the car.

Let my kid eat/drink xyz... Ugh, yeah. My kids have gone through such extreme hunger strikes that I would let them eat practically anything they wanted. Things I should be ashamed of. But, guess what? I'm not!

Sadly, there are so many more things I judged other moms for. I feel so silly looking back at it now. I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt now and realize that most of us are doing the best we can. Some days are better than others. I'm sure I have been judged many times, with many more to come. But it never fails that the ones who judge most harshly are those that don't have a clue what it is like to walk in our shoes...

Were you a parenting critic before you had kids? What did you judge most harshly?

Saturday, March 8

Avery's first sleepover

I dropped Avery off for her first sleepover this afternoon. I had to fight back tears as she ran off excitedly. I had to coax her back to give me a hug! How is it possible that this day has already come? I swear she was JUST born! I don't think I will be getting any sleep tonight...

I hope she has fun. She deserves to be away from whiny little sisters for a night. But, geez, I feel lost without her! She is my little sidekick! I guess I better get used to it, though. It might be the first but won't be the last!

Since I am feeling all sentimental, let's take a look back at little baby Ry...

Thursday, March 6

Getting back on track...

The last month has really run me down... With all of Avery's activities (dance, Girl Scouts, CrossFit, gymnastics, horseback riding), I feel like I am always in a rush. Couple that with the stress of moving the twins to "big girl beds" (more on that later) and the fact that I am still waking Maren at night in an attempt to pack some pounds on her, and I am just about ready to pull my hair out!

In all my stress, I have developed some pretty bad habits. More often than not, I have been buying convenience foods because, well, when the hell do I have time to cook?! The twins have gone through a pretty significant personality change, and I honestly wonder if some of it is food related... So I made a commitment to get back on track with healthier eating. I went to the store on Tuesday and purchased only single ingredient foods... So far so good!

I hope that getting our diets under control will help all of us. I need to get back into a cooking routine. We need to make more of an effort to sit and eat together as a family--even if it's at 5:00 because we have other obligations in the evening. I am starting school in 2 weeks, so hopefully I will be able to keep it together. I KNOW I can do better for my kids than I have been. I can do better for myself. I will do better.

As I mentioned earlier, we moved the twins to big girl beds about a month ago. I resisted for a long time, but I finally did it to shut D up. What.A.Mistake. Seriously, my well behaved 2 year olds have turned into complete hellions! They spend more time crying than not. They fight. They are becoming violent. What the hell?!

Initially, they were terrified on the beds. Would not go near them. I could get them to fall asleep in them occasionally, but only if I laid with them for 3 hours, and that just isn't realistic. Plus, they would wake up in the middle of the night and scream. So they said they wanted to sleep in the floor. Fine. Knock yourself out, kids. All was fine for about a week... Then the real trouble started...

Naps have become nonexistent. They refuse. Probably because they ripped down their black out curtains and now it is too bright in their room. Then they discovered that if they work together, they can accomplish destruction that nobody ever thought possible. They remove the sheets and blankets and then they actually MOVE THE MATTRESSES! Initially, they just pulled them onto the floor, but then they figured out if they prop them up at an angle, they can use them as slides. Ughhhhh. They do this every single day at nap time. And every day I clean it up.

Their room is totally destroyed, and I am on the brink of an emotional breakdown. I have tried everything I can think of. Positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, bribery, threats, cutting out nap, earlier bed time, later bed time... They don't care about any of it. So I feel like a total failure of a mom. I just want my sweet babies back.

So, please, somebody tell me that satan laces boxed dinners with hellion dust and that my kids will return to normal now that I am making the time to consistently cook nutritious meals?!? A girl can hope, right?